In this study I reduced a portrait of my brother Mike* to a line drawing, borrowing a bit from Paul Klee, Bauhaus Master and Painter from the early part of the 20th century. On the left side of the paper, I drew the same line drawing, first with white pencil, with the hope of creating a negative image. But apparently there wasn’t enough wax in the pencil trace to resist the blue pigment I overlaid on it. I had to overpaint the pencil lines with white gouache.
The painting below is stage one of this project: After Image, watercolor only.
I made a couple of modifications to the ‘after’ image side of the watercolor, using some of the filters available in photoshop.
The point of this exercise was to show the difference between Mike’s world and mine. Since Mike has never spoken, nor has he ever plainly indicated that he knows who I am, I can only guess what his strange world is like. Maybe there is some level or plane upon which we both can arrive and acknowledge each other. We haven’t come to that place in the 65 years we’ve coexisted, although not for lack of trying.
*Mike is my older brother who is autistic, low functioning and nonverbal.